How to overcome feeling jealous
In the first part of this article we looked at some of the reasons you might be feeling jealous, and how these feelings might be manifesting themselves. If you haven't yet read Part 1, do take a look now. Identifying your behaviour patterns and exactly how you're feeling right now will help you hugely when we start looking at ways to overcome these negative feelings.
So, the big question...
Is there a light at the end of the tunnel?
Sometimes, when you’re in the midst of your emotions (and there are physical manifestations of what you feel), it may seem as if there’s no end to the torment you’re going through. When your partner starts to become defensive or express that he/she is tired of your emotional tirade, the feelings might even get more intense. (Just in case... you may also need to read my page on how to survive infidelity)
But take heart, it really doesn’t have to be that way. You can gradually overcome these feelings and I promise you, you’ll be able to see beyond the difficulty of what you’re going through now.
You cannot change another person, but you can change how you respond to someone or a situation - however tough that may be.
Getting to the root of jealousy
Jealousy is a heart issue and it can also spring from not knowing how valuable you are. The way you see yourself can either paint or taint how you view your relationships.
Therefore, ask yourself:
What is my worth as a person?
Usually, low self-esteem and dysfunctional/abusive relationships are linked. Take a moment to think about your previous relationships. If you’re suffering from low self-esteem, it’s very likely that you’ve had similar problems in your relationships before. There might be recurring patterns of jealousy or maybe even cheating. What are the common qualities of your previous partners?
It's not enough to know what you’re worth and how you’ve navigated relationships in the past. It’s also very important to know exactly what you’re dealing with at any given moment.
When your emotions are at their peak...
... remove yourself from the situation and take some time out to jot down the answers to these questions:
- What is 'making' me jealous?
- Is it a real threat or is it something that I merely fear?
- How is this affecting me, my partner and my relationship?
- What can I do to be better?
How to overcome jealousy
Please trust me when I say, you really can get better! I can so imagine how overwhelmed you might feel, perhaps even as if you have two different personalities at times!
I am aiming to help you with some top tips and advice to overcome those feelings of envy, jealousy, resentment and spite...
When dealing with others outside your relationship
Set realistic boundaries when dealing with potential ‘romantic’ interests. Maybe at some point in everyone’s relationship a real threat comes along. Before that happens - or even if it's already happened - it might be good to discuss things that you’re not okay with when it comes to dealing with other people.
For example, you may say: “I won’t feel comfortable if I see you spending time after work with someone from the office who I know could possibly be interested in you.”
Or it could be as simple as: “I think I’d like you to avoid any form of physical contact whatsoever with someone other than me, if that’s all right with you.”
When dealing with your partner
- Communicate your feelings to your partner. It’s good to begin with statements explaining how you feel and not just launching into a detailed explanation of what your partner's doing that’s making you feel bad. He/she might merely perceive it as an attack on their character if you only say what you think they’re doing wrong. Part of the joy of being partners is being able to learn how to negotiate speed bumps like this. Do it well and do it lovingly.
- Don’t just communicate, communicate positively. That means you choose consciously to affirm when it’s easier to tear down; to speak gently when it’s easier to scream; and to speak kindly when it’s easier to just get mad. Your partner will be more responsive to you and willing to discuss the issue at hand if you don’t allow your emotions to get in the way. If there are real reasons for you to be jealous, then you can set ground rules about being honest and upfront before you start talking about the issue.
- Affirm each other as partners. You and your partner can revisit the reasons why you fell in love with each other. Sometimes, because of the passage of time and subsequent familiarity, you can forget why you love a person in the first place.
- Give your partner a freedom radius. This means you give them time to reconnect with himself/herself and with other people without having to fear that you’ll be bothered or upset if he or she doesn’t give you a call to update you. Give each other allowances for growth and individual enjoyment. Your partner will like the feeling of being trusted and will probably be more open towards you as a result.
- After and even during the emotional struggle, find ways to reconnect as a couple. Revive old traditions. Be intentional in doing things for your partner. Be sweet (if not sweeter!) Go on exciting and new adventures together.
When it comes to yourself
- Affirm yourself. You are a person of value and you have an identity that is separate from your partner. Know your worth.
- Catch yourself. When you notice recurring patterns of negative self-talk and negative thoughts, decide immediately to change your mode. Exercise, eat healthily, get a massage or write in your journal. Do something that will take your mind off those thoughts – particularly if you’re already talked about your concerns. Don’t drive your car in reverse – it will only take you backwards!
- Reconnect with other people. Your life didn’t stop when you had a romantic relationship. You can visit your grandparents or your parents. You can also spend time catching up with friends you haven’t seen for a long time.
- Do something meaningful. Visit the elderly in your community. Volunteer for a soup kitchen. Visit those who are in prison. Allow yourself to have wings and to do other things.
- Visit a counsellor if you feel that things are really not working out well for you. You can talk to someone right now on my site.
- If you think that the relationship is already beyond repair and you've already done everything from your end to make things work, it is perfectly all right to let go. Relationships should free you to be who you were meant to be, and not to constrain you from reaching your destiny. Jealousy may be a warning sign that things are headed somewhere else in a relationship – especially if the cause of jealousy is unfounded.
- You owe it to yourself to be happy...
Therefore, make happiness happen :-)
How to Survive Infidelity
Is your Partner Cheating?
How to Choose a Therapist
Chat with or Email a Relationship Expert
Secret to a Happy Relationship
How to End a Relationship
How to Argue
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